Sunday, July 2, 2017

Wandering and Assistive Devices for Seniors With Dementia

Have a plan in case someone does wander off. Keep a list of people and phone numbers you can call on to help. Begin search efforts immediately. Ninety-four percent of people who wander are found within 1.5 miles of where they disappeared. Keep a recent, close-up photo and updated medical information on hand to give to police. Keep a list of places where the person may wander (past jobs, former homes, churches, friends’ or relatives’ homes, or restaurants) and check those places first.

In addition to the steps mentioned above, caregivers and relatives can look at the many devices out there in the market that are designed to help locate people who wander. Here are some of the most popular ones:

Medic Alert: The Alzheimer’s Association offers a program called MedicAlert and Safe Return. The person who wanders wears a bracelet with information and a phone number to call if someone finds them. If a person becomes lost, caregivers can call the 24-hour emergency response line to report it. A community support network will be activated, including local Alzheimer Association chapters and law enforcement agencies, to help locate the missing person. With this service, important medical information can be provided to emergency responders when the person is found through the information provided on the bracelet.

Comfort Zone:  The Alzheimer’s Association offers a product called Comfort Zone Check-In, which can determine the location of a person and send daily scheduled location check-ins to a caregiver, indicating where a person is throughout the day. In addition to the scheduled service, the caregiver can use a “Find Me” or “Follow Me” function that provides updates every two minutes for an hour. The tracking can be done through a device the person carries in a purse or pocket or through a smart phone.

GPS SmartSole:  GPS SmartSole is a GPS device hidden and sealed inside a shoe insole. It works like a cell phone and uses the same GPS technology. One advantage is that the device is inside the shoe so the person is less likely to lose it or not wear it. It also has a feature where you can map out an area where the person lives (for example a house), and if the person wanders away, the caregiver will receive an email or text alert that they have wandered out of their home or other safe area. Multiple caregivers can log in to check the location of the person being monitored.

Full Article and Source:
Wandering and Assistive Devices for Seniors With Dementia

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